from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Any of a group of DNA-containing viruses, including those that cause smallpox, cowpox, and other poxlike diseases in vertebrates.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Any of a group of DNA viruses, of the family Poxviridae, that cause pox diseases in vertebrates

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. any of a group of viruses that can cause pox diseases in vertebrates


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Over roughly the past decade, the CDC has been called to retrieve the remains of a man covered with smallpox lesions whose coffin was unearthed during construction near Louisville, Ky., as well as suspicious-looking scabs in a library book in New Mexico and a museum in Arkansas, says Inger Damon, chief of the CDC's poxvirus and rabies branch.

    'Bizarre Bits' Exhibition Took a Strange Turn When Feds Arrived

  • The smallpox vaccine is made using a poxvirus that infects cows (cowpox or vaccinia).

    Smallpox Vaccine

  • So far the most promising of these vaccines has been one using another poxvirus -- canarypox -- to deliver HIV recombinants (See Table 2).

    Analog Science Fiction and Fact

  • Other vaccine trials using the poxvirus vaccinia as a vector to deliver live recombinant HIV (based on glycoprotein 160) have been found safe, and have stimulated partial immunity to HIV.

    Analog Science Fiction and Fact

  • CV-301 originates from the same poxvirus technology platform as PROSTVAC

    Reuters: Press Release

  • To overcome this poor responsiveness, recombinant poxvirus vectors, including vaccinia, fowlpox and modified vaccinia Ankara (MVA), can be genetically engineered to express one or more tumor-associated antigens to greatly enhance the immune system's ability to recognize and destroy cancer cells bearing any of the targeted antigens. ® and CV-301 are prime-boost vaccines, sequentially combining two different poxviruses (vaccinia and fowlpox).

    Reuters: Press Release

  • British research has found that the vaccinia poxvirus spreads infection by jumping from one cell to another before it finds an uninfected cell. - Articles related to Millions at risk if AIDS focus fades, says expert

  • The attachment of a poxvirus particle to a cell triggers a multitude of incompletely understood signaling events inside the cell.

    New Scientist - Online News

  • "It (the discovery) helps us understand how poxvirus causes disease by evading the immune response," Deng said.

    The Daily O'Collegian

  • If this breakthrough is made, it will help advance the finding of the structure of the poxvirus protein, which could lead to the development of medication and other items necessary to fight poxviruses, Krumm said.

    The Daily O'Collegian


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  • I find this very confusing. Lots of animals have their own poxes, but some of the ones we humans get we have named after innocent animals, like chickenpox and Molluscipoxvirus...

    February 17, 2016

  • Peter Piper picked a big box of pigpox pickpockets.

    February 17, 2016

  • no chickenpox?

    February 17, 2016

  • Oh, wow. I probably have to steal all of those for my sick-animals list. Very impressive collection!

    February 17, 2016

  • I anoint quokkapox my new favourite word.

    February 16, 2016

  • There are many poxviruses in nature, and they infect species that gather in swarms and herds, circulating among them like pickpockets at a fair. There are two principal kinds of pock viruses: the poxes of vertebrates and the poxes of insects. Pox hunters have so far discovered mousepox, monkeypox, skunkpox, pigpox, goatpox, camelpox, pseudocowpox, buffalopox, gerbilpox, several deerpoxes, chamoispox, a couple of sealpoxes, turkeypox, canarypox, pigeonpox, starlingpox, peacockpox, sparrowpox, juncopox, mynahpox, quailpox, parrotpox, and toadpox. There's mongolian horsepox, a pox called Yaba monkey tumor, and a pox called orf. There's dolphinpox, penguinpox, two kangaroopoxes, raccoonpox, and quokkapox. (The quokka is an Australian wallaby.) Snakes catch snakepox, spectacled caimans suffer from spectacled caimanpox, and crocodiles get crocpox. . . .

    Insects are tortured by poxviruses. There are three groups of insect poxviruses: the beetlepoxes, the butterflypoxes (which include the mothpoxes), and the poxes of flies, including the mosquitopoxes. Any attempt to get to the bottom of the insect poxes would be like trying to enumerate the nine billion names of God.

    . . .

    . . . The insect poxes may have arisen in early Devonian times, long before the age of dinosaurs . . . when . . . the first insects were evolving. . . .

    At least two known midgepoxes torment midges. Grasshoppers are known to suffer from at least six different grasshopperpoxes. If a plague of African locusts breaks out with locustpox, the plague is hit with a plague, and is in deep trouble. Poxviruses keep herds and swarms of living things in check, preventing them from growing to large and overwhelming their habitats.

    Richard Preston, The Demon in the Freezer: A True Story (New York: Random House, 2002), pp. 64-66

    February 16, 2016